Cloud Storage-as-a-Service (STaaS) providers give enterprise customers access to the latest storage technologies while managing the operational side for them, eliminating the need for them to invest in substantial upfront costs or ongoing maintenance. Cloud storage is cost-effective and offers robust security, scalability, and efficiency, making it easy for businesses to swiftly integrate it into their operations without facing growth limitations. Since cloud storage often houses sensitive business data, businesses must choose the right provider to ensure the security and integrity of their data. This article details the top enterprise STaaS providers currently on the market and the services they provide, and lists key selection criteria for choosing from among them.
Top 8 Cloud Storage-as-a-Service Providers
With more than 90 percent of enterprise businesses using cloud storage, vendors have flooded the marketplace with solutions designed to meet the demand. Here are our top picks for cloud Storage-as-a-Service providers in 2023.
Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3)
Amazon offers a range of storage solutions for businesses, including Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service), an industry-leading product that helps companies scale storage resources efficiently. This object-storage solution meets fluctuating business needs with high-performance computing applications. It can be easily integrated with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and other third-party services for better data insights.
- Cost-effective storage classes without upfront investments or hardware refresh cycles
- Easy-to-use management features with robust access controls
- Simplified data access with S3 Access Points
- Simplified migration of on-premises analytics workloads
- 99.999 percent data durability
- Configurable S3 Inventory for tracking objects
- Organization-wide visibility using S3 Storage Lens
- Purpose-built storage classes
- Both server and client-side encryption for data security
- AWS Lambda functions for data processing and serverless computing
Dropbox offers a suite of products to help with efficient data storage and organization, streamlined document workflows, automatic backup and restoration, secure sharing, and quick transfers. Used by more than 600,000 teams globally, the company offers various plan options for businesses of all sizes as well as custom solutions to meet your business goals.
- Creative partner integration with most-used business applications like Zoom, Slack, Microsoft Office, Canvas, Asana, and more
- Advanced document controls with real-time analytics
- Automatic backup for easy document recovery and restoration
- Custom passwords and expiration dates for protected work sharing
- Complete visibility with secure, distributed infrastructure
- Enterprise-grade file encryption
- 5,000 GB secure storage with Standard Plan
- Unlimited legally binding signature requests with Dropbox Sign
- Easy team collaboration with a centralized content hub
- Shared file synchronization with real-time updates and activity notifications
Google offers enterprise-grade cloud storage services with Google Workspace, including a wide range of essential business applications that make storing, accessing, and sharing data easier within the same platform. This flexible and innovative solution boosts business productivity and coordination with easy file sharing, centralized administration, and real-time collaboration. A free trial that makes it easier to evaluate.
- Additional business-grade services, security options, administrative controls, and interoperability
- Easy migration from existing environments
- Twice the storage capacity of free version
- 24/7 phone and email support and shared controls
- Secure and easy-to-manage shared spaces for files organization
- Hundreds of integrated apps for e-signatures, additional security layers, scheduling, and more
- Stringent privacy and security standards
- Zero-trust approach eliminating VPNs
- Data retention and e-discovery with Vault
- Artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML)-based search enhancements for enhanced user connectivity with important files
IBM Cloud Object Storage
IBM offers different cloud storage solutions to support growing business needs. IBM Cloud Object Storage can accommodate exponential data growth with reduced storage costs, and offers flexible resiliency options across multiple geographic locations. With its robust partner ecosystem, IBM cloud solutions ensure fast data transfer and high availability. Built-in data lifecycle operations facilitate easy management of critical workloads.
- Role-based policies and access permissions for security and data protection
- Integrated IBM Cloud Engine for faster data analysis
- Scalable and secure destination for data backup and recovery
- Permanently available and protected archived data
- Data durability greater than 99.999 percent
- Smart and flexible storage tiers for changing data usage patterns
- Granular control and authority with industry-leading encryption key management
- Object-versioning to prevent unintentional data loss
- $500 promotional credit for new users
- Starting plans with 25 GB free storage
Nextcloud offers unified cloud solutions with multiple data storage systems. With a seamless user interface, it integrates all storage systems to eliminate data silos. Nextcloud is extremely user-focused and has a clear and transparent development process and offers a wide range of security features to ensure data protection.
- Enhanced logging capabilities and powerful file access controls
- Consistent file system view
- Multi-bucket capable object storage
- Server-side encryption for data security
- More than 200 apps for extended functionalities
- Decentralized, blockchain-based storage technology
- Fine-grain sharing controls for controlling and monitoring data exchange
- Security Bug Bounty Program for data privacy
- Direct access to core Nextcloud engineering expertise
- Keyboard and screen-reader navigation for easy accessibility
Microsoft Cloud is a preferred solution for data storage used by more than 85 percent of Fortune 500 companies. It offers a productivity platform with user-centric, AI-powered solutions for a secure and sustainable cloud storage system. It can be united with other Microsoft solutions and products for efficiency.
- Highly extensible and modular clouds designed for specific industries
- Streamlined customer experiences with a combination of Microsoft products
- Multiple-layered security for a fortified cloud environment
- Cohesive file experience with sync libraries and shareable links
- Enhanced admin capabilities with granular visibility and security controls
- Untethered mobility with mobile application
- Tips and advice using Microsoft OneDrive Tech Community
- Productivity library for guidance and resources
- Industry-leading security processes and standards
Sync offers data storage solutions that can maximize business productivity and enterprise-grade infrastructure and certification to assure security and compliance. Sync’s file portal capabilities guarantee easy data transfer and sharing with clients, customers, and other stakeholders. It offers read/write and remote wipe permissions and real-time notifications on all share activities.
- Centralized folders for easy access and collaboration
- Custom-branded client file portal for professional file sharing
- Groundbreaking privacy protection features
- Unlimited cloud storage and unlimited data transfer
- Centralized, real-time backups for easy data recovery
Box offers a secure cloud storage environment with highly flexible controls and simplified compliance. With a suite of productivity tools, Box can efficiently automate business workflows with agile collaborations. It also has reliable document retention mechanisms and supports defensible eDiscovery.
- Single platform collaboration for real-time file sharing
- More than 1,500 seamless integrations
- Business plan includes unlimited cloud storage
- Link sharing with auto-expiration and password protection features
- Balanced data accessibility and security
- Per-user-basis control permissions
- Automatic versions saving to prevent data loss
- Supports international data residency requirements
- Failsafe cloud backup with 99.99 percent Service Level Agreements and redundancy
- Intuitive interface for great user experience
Cloud Storage-as-a-Service Use Cases
Cloud Storage-as-a-Service solutions offer the flexibility and scalability required in the current digital landscape, and can improve data performance for SMBs and large enterprises. Here are the most common use cases of Cloud STaaS.
Cloud STaaS solutions help businesses with advanced data transfer strategies and ensure a smoother transition. If you are migrating to the cloud, these STaaS providers can help you with large-scale transfers and can take care of data security with defined encryption mechanisms and protocols.
Big Data and Analytics
Advanced data operations deal with vast volumes of data for processing, monitoring, and analytics. Cloud storage makes this information readily available as well as accessible. Storage-as-a-Service providers can help with big data and analytics with more targeted relevance in a shorter time period.
As modern businesses use the cloud environment for deployment processes, STaaS providers can help. They offer container orchestration platforms, infrastructure solutions, and scalable storage options for smoother deployments.
Centralized Access and File Sharing
In the current workplace scenario, where remote and hybrid working models are rising, centralized access and file sharing with robust access control mechanisms are necessary. Cloud Storage-as-a-Service solutions offer a centralized repository for files and data storage. It can be accessed from anywhere at any time by authorized users.
Data Backup and Disaster Recovery
As essential security measures, businesses need regular data backup and recovery solutions to prevent major disruptions from affecting their operations. STaaS solutions can facilitate automated backup schedules and retention policies to prevent data loss and business interruption. They can also address increasing capacity requirements.
Selecting a Cloud Storage-as-a-Service Provider
Here are a few tips to consider when selecting a Cloud Storage-as-a-Service solution for your business:
- Evaluate storage needs. Understanding your requirements precisely is crucial for any business decision—assess your business’s storage demands, expectations, future goals, growth, and scalability factors.
- Do not compromise on security. Data breaches can cost time, money, and reputation. As StaaS providers handle your confidential business information, security should be a top concern—make sure to check all the security features, protective levels, access controls, and encryption measures.
- Consider performance and reliability. Evaluating how the cloud storage service will improve your business’s performance and efficiency is important—make sure it uses the latest technologies, cloud architectures, and security protocols.
- Review terms and conditions. Check the details of your Service Level Agreement thoroughly, paying special attention to the terms and conditions—it is better to avoid long-term contracts and opt for subscription-based plans to migrate to another option if the service does not cater to your needs efficiently.
- Seek easy-to-use options. Instead of going for high-end options with many features, look for solutions that can be easily integrated with your existing business framework. You won’t have to invest additionally in upgrading your technical infrastructure and can migrate easily.
- Don’t forget customer support. Make sure the vendor provides comprehensive product documentation and customer support to help resolve any issues quickly.
Bottom Line: Top Cloud STaaS Providers
In the contemporary, data-centric business landscape, cloud Storage-as-a-Service solutions are pivotal tools for fostering business expansion, offering technical expertise and financial efficiency. Transitioning to cloud-native architectures is not merely a trend but a strategic move, given their capacity to bolster business modernization efforts. STaaS solutions are equipped with the requisite technologies to manage storage efficiently, but businesses must make informed choices when selecting STaaS providers to ensure alignment with their long-term objectives and operational needs.